To start the introduction to Streaming and Video solutions we first need to set a couple of things straight. Thinking back on how we describe the possibilities to our potential clients, our end users and even our new staff, I realize that a Swedish saying is spot on:
”Loved child has many names”
To live broadcast or on-demand stream a meeting and presentation is today called a webinar, a webcast, a conference broadcast, a recorded meeting or an enterprise video.
To organize your video content in a secure and scalable way with different channels for internal information with high integrity and external content reaching for the masses you have to know what your needs are. Is YouTube covering your needs or do you need to deploy a on-premise streaming platform within your enterprise?
The answers to these questions are many and I will try to help you navigate the jungle when looking for a streaming video platform for your needs.
Tim Siglin from streamingmedia.com brings up in his article some advice when looking at enterprise video platforms and focuses on Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) with many quality take aways.
With this post, we want to showcase what we have learned is important to our clients when choosing a platform over the past 15 years.
Before we continue with this post we would like to remind everyone out there of our brand name change to Quickchannel as of 1st of July 2016. We are happy to announce that we have been nominated for 2016 European Readers Choice Awards in these categories:
Cloud Video Service
Enterprise Video Solution
Feel free to join the award and put a vote on your favorite streaming service HERE.
There are four pillars that we see our clients value the most when they are working with streaming in their communications. These four are:
- Video content generation
- Content distribution and administration
- Video player editing and statistics
- Integration with third party systems
1. Video content generation
Today, video content can be created in many different ways for an enterprise and organization. Every person with a smartphone has a potential content generator with its built in camera and microphone.
What we have learned from our 15 year journey with our clients is that all content needs to be easy to create and of high quality to engage the viewers.
To scale a solution so that many members of the team and organization can share their knowledge, you need an easy user interface where end users can administrate broadcasts and upload videos with ease. The more user friendly the application is the more it will get used by the organization.
This creates a demand for the solution and the provider. These services need to accept both content from mobile uploads as well as professional camera and encoder solutions.
2. Content distribution and administration
Video distribution can be made in many ways. We mentioned YouTube earlier and how it might fit the needs of your distribution. There is nothing wrong with using services such as YouTube or Vimeo for your distribution. These services are major search engines and are a great way to spread content. If they suit your needs then there shouldn’t be anything holding you back, use them!
However, some organizations have other demands regarding the functionality and user experience such as:
- Who has access to what content? Security by password, IP-adresses or geoblocking?
- Metadata and other content with video? Do you want to show a synchronized PowerPoint presentation or show dual video streams in the same player?
- Can you search amongst your content and organize it in an effective manner?
- How do you administrate the content? Can you have different roles for content uploaders, users that can book live streams and administrators that can overlook all processes?
- Does a broadcast start automatically on a unique pre-generated URL and published automatically afterwards, making it available on-demand?
Before you know that your platform will be scalable for your future needs together with simplicity today, a good idea is to have these basic questions answered.
3. Video player editing and branding
When a seminar or the monthly CEO speech has been broadcasted to the organization it is often needed some simple but necessary touch ups. For publishing on-demand versions you might need to cut away the first few minutes before the seminar or speech actually starts and also edit out any pauses in the middle of the video (especially if these pauses are hours long).
The following functions are heavily used by our clients today:
- Editing the video and presentation in the cloud.
- Add chapters to the video presentation so that your viewers can engage and navigate with ease.
- Change graphical elements and branding depending on the video content. Is it for internal education or a product presentation for marketing purposes?
- Generated analytics and statistical reports that can be exported to Excel with a click of a button.
4. Integration with third party systems
Does the platform and solution integrate well with other third party systems? Can your provider do customer specific integrations?
These are some growing concerns of users in this industry today and therefore it is an important aspect to consider. Can you get Single-Sign-On (SSO) so that your end users don’t have to worry about any additional logins and passwords?
Can you record and broadcast your videoconference meeting and have it published automatically in your content management system (CMS)? A growing need we see is to record and broadcast the videoconference meetings with smooth integration between the systems and services.
With this post I hope I have shined some light on the questions and aspects you need to consider before choosing a solution. We at Quickchannel have learned this and much more throughout our 15 years creating streaming solutions. We learn from the demands of our users, the industry and grow with the industry.
We have the answers to these questions and many more. We also provide advice and lend our expertise to ensure that your organization will communicate efficiently in a seamless manner.
Let us help you or just discuss the challenges in this ever-changing environment.